Flakemore set for BMC debut this week

U23 time trial world champion targets Australian title

Under-23 time trial world champion Campbell Flakemore will make his debut with BMC Racing this week at the 2015 Mars Cycling Australia Road National Championships in Buninyong.

Flakemore, 22, will be racing alongside Cadel Evans, his childhood hero, during Evans' final three races as a professional.

"I's pretty cool," Flakemore said. "I was actually there in 2011 when [Evans] won the Tour de France, so to have seen that and to be racing with him three to four years later is pretty special."

Flakemore's first objective will be in the time trial on January 8, where he'll have the opportunity to compete against the country's best in the race against the clock.

"It's (Rohan) Dennis, (Luke) Durbridge, (Michael) Hepburn, (Jack) Bobrigde, (Richie) Porte, (Damien) Howson, (Michael) Rogers and (Cameron) Meyer," he said. "It's crazy the amount of good time trialers Australia's got.

"My goal is top five, but with these names it's going to be pretty hard," he said. "I think I can definitely be in the mix though. You don't know what sort of shape everyone is going to be in, so I can just prepare as best as I can and see where I'm at on the day."

The new time trial parcours, which takes place near a wind farm and includes hardly any flat stretches of road, could suit the young rider well.

"I guess that could suit me a little bit better than a pancake flat trial," he said. "But it's going to be hot and there's going to be a lot of different factors as well. It all adds up to be a tricky TT course. The strongest man will win as they always do with the time trial."

Flakemore's attention to detail was borne out during his win in Ponferrada, where he took the rainbow jersey by just 0.48 of a second ahead of Ireland's Ryan Mullen.

"I knew it was going to be close," he said of the Worlds win. "With the climb at 5km to go, I knew that if I could make a bit of time up there I could possibly get it back, so I just went full gas, and it was just enough. It was a crazy day and I was just happy to win it in the end."

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